Wednesday 25 May 2011

Featherstone Rovers

Featherstone Rovers currently play in the Co-Operative Championship, which is the second tier of professional rugby league.

I took these photos in April 2009, & was fortunate enough in that the gates were open, so I was able to walk round & take a good number of pictures. It really is what could be described as a traditional 'old fashioned' rugby league venue, & delight just to stroll all four sides.

Follow the sign.

A marvellous & surely unique name for a ground...

Hooligan style graffiti on the wall on the road outside.

A large car park is by the ground.

The main turnstiles.

Past them is a new building, with the old Memorial Gates built into & preserved within the brickwork.

This is the one on the right, dedicated to Freddie Miller.

With this stone on the left.

Moving on,still outside, past the car park were these buidings, which included the social club & the souvenir shop. To the right of this picture is...

...this entrance to the stadium. From here we will begin our circuit of the ground.

Opposite is a single tiered stand. This is the SCS Components Community Stand.

To our right (the left as we look at it from the front) is the older main stand.

Turning to the left (or right as we are looking at it!) is the club function rooms bar area, by the look of it. We are going to head this direction, walking round clockwise.

From the corner we look down the main stand touchline.

From this corner we see over the pitch.

Behind this goal is this superb stretch of terracing. Anyone remember when football grounds used to look like this?

Scoreboards at the back.

As is a small bar.

Outside, down behind this terrace, is a training area.

From the back of this terrace we see the newer stand to the left.

And the old one to the right. The 'ugly' social club just doesn't fit in, but I'm sure it keeps the club alive with the money it beings in.

Behind the posts.

The terrace curves at the corner.

We're getting closer to the stand.

The next 'corner' shot, showing the terrace in all its glory.

Now along the next side.

At the bottom of the stand.

A trade union banner at the back. This happens to be the one I am a member of.

Up at the top we look across the seats, with the other open terrace at the other end in the background.

Across the pitch we see the main stand. Note the sprinklers are on. the groundsman was busy at work, he came over for a brief friendly chat, & said the reserve team were at home that evening. Sadly I would be on the train back to London before they finished. I would love to watch a game at this ground one day, sooner rather than later, at he said there were plans to build another stand on the terraced end we hav already seen.

More boards at the back of the stand. This one from long time corporate supporters of rugby league, Tetleys.

Over the halfway line, at the main stand.

The ground has a wonderfully unique name, in Post Office Road, I'll bet not many called it by the corporate Big Fellas Stadium title!

Moving onward, we see the rest of the stand.

And from the top, at this end.

To the front again, love that board at the back Super League pies! Though i've always preferred the Pukka ones myself.

Up in the corner of this stand we now look down on the Post Office Road terrace.

To the right, looking over the pitch.

Down the front once more, glacing up into the stand for the last time.

A section of terrace goes on to the corner.

Which curves round to the open end.

From the corner, the rialings are 'proper traditional' & are exactly the same as the ones that were at the old Champion Hill Stadium, at my Club, Dulwich Hamlet FC.

What is srange about the expanses of terracing at this ground is the complete lack of crush barriers.

Pie Hut at the back!

As well as the bar. Pop, I'm guessing, being a northern expression for soft drinks.

Now we look back at the stand seen.

Along the back of this terrace you can see how close the terraced houses behind are. I can imagine, in glory days past, fans clambering onto the roof of their house if they couldn't get a ticket for a 'sell-out' big game.

Through the posts at this end.

Main stand to the left, where we are heading.

The last of our four 'corner' pictures.

The terrace continues round. I love it!

Behind the side section of terrace is the main turnstiles, which we saw as we arrived.

Moving down there we see the steps leading up to the terrace, with the club initials carved into the grass bank.

Instead of going back into the ground we're going ot have a quick nose behind the main stand.

The club name is proudly shown on the back of it.

The new brick building we saw first of all houses this centre.

Minibus parked outside.

Ground regulations were also on display in this area, & others.

As were posters for this local event. Not a popular hobby down in London!

Now we've re-traced our steps, back to the side terrace, & gone into the main stand. Lovely old wooden seating.

And from the front.

Dugouts also old school ,& sunken.

The other one, with more of the stand in view behind.

In the centre, near the back.

The newer stand, over the halfway line.

More older wooden seats, as we almost complete our brief visit here.

Our last pic is of the press area, with the timekeepers seat. We're 'pressed' for time as we've got to get a bus back to Wakefield for the footbal, so we must dash.


James said...

This captures Rugby League finest old venue brilliantly.

Rabbler said...

thak you, I was fortunate the gates were open on a Bank Holiday. Agree, it's a cracking ground.

Andrew said...

I have lots of great memories of Post Office road. It was a great place to be with a 3000+ crowd. There were crush barriers at one time and all standing room where the family stand is now in what was called the Bullock Shed.

Terry M said...

Sends a shiver down my spine. Post office road has an atmosphere all of its own. Love the place and I'll be sorry in a way to see it change. It's a wonderful club which, as usual, is punching well above its weight.

Andy K said...

I have been watching Fev Rovers for 28 years and still stand in the same place, in front of the Pie Hut at the Post Office Road end. Your tour of the ground made me realise how much I love this club and will miss the old ground when it is developed. However, it is the right thing to do to bring the club into line with the bigger boys in Super League.

Glad you enjoyed your visit and think your idea of recording grounds (of all sports) is a great one - congrats on your site.

Rabbler said...

Andrew; Terry; & Andy K:
Thank you for your kind comments. At the time I took them I hadn't realised that your ground was being re-developed. I am glad I managed to have a look before it changed.
Being a Londoner I don't get up north much, so it was nice to be able to look at your place.